Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ranch Snack Mix

This is the "yummiest" snack mix I think my mouth has ever snacked on.  Seriously.  My mom gave me a cookbook when I "went veg" called Vegetarian and More! by Linda Rosensweig.  It's full of vegetarian recipes with optional meat add-ins (for the carnivore husband).  Anyway, this recipe is from that cookbook and I'll definitely be making it again . . . for that next snack attack!

3 cups plain oyster crackers
1 cup thin pretzel sticks
1 cup wheat square cereal (such as Chex)
1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
1 package (1 ounce) ranch salad dressing mix
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  In a 15" x 10" or larger baking dish, combine the crackers, pretzels, cereal, and peanuts.

In a small bowl, combine the salad dressing mix, oil, broth, chili powder, and garlic powder.  Pour over the cracker mix and toss to coat.

Bake, stirring frequently, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the crackers begin to brown.  Let cool.

Makes 8 servings

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Honey-Glazed Carrots and Add Thyme for Whipped Potatoes

Tonight's dinner was quick, easy, and tasted like it was neither.  Even Matt, who doesn't like cooked carrots, liked these!  Since the recipe makes 12 servings, I adjusted the ingredients a little to just make enough for the two of us. 

Honey-Glazed Carrots
  • 6 cups water (I used 2 cups)
  • 3 pounds baby carrots ( I used 1 pound)
  • 2 Tblsp butter (I used 1 Tblsp)
  • 3-4 Tblsp honey (I used 3)
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper (as much as you'd like)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (I forgot and it was lovely without)
  1. In a large skillet, bring water to a boil.  Add carrots, and return to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer covered for 8-10 minutes or until carrots are just tender.  Drain carrots, and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. To glaze carrots combine butter, honey, lemon zest,  red pepper, and salt (which I didn't use and it was yummy still).  Stir constantly over medium heat until butter is melted and mixture bubbles.  Carefully add carrots (mine splashed a little, woopsie).  Toss gently for 2-3 minutes or until carrots are thoroughly coated with glaze and heated through. 
Claire Robinson is a newer chef on Food Network, and her show is called "5 Ingredient Fix".  It's pretty self-explanatory, but you only need 5 ingredients for all of her recipes (except for oil, water, salt, the stuff you're definitely going to have).  Talk about easy!  Here is her recipe for "Add Thyme for Whipped Potatoes".  I didn't take a picture . . .whipped potatoes aren't that intersting to look at :)

  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled (and I smashed mine with the side of a knife)
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 3 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into equal-size chunks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  1. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, add the half-and-half, garlic, thyme, and butter and heat until the butter is melted. Allow to sit over very low heat to infuse the flavors and keep hot.
  2. In a large pot, add the potatoes, cover with water and generously season with salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and then reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Immediately drain the potatoes and put them through a food mill over a serving bowl. If you don't have a food mill, you can hand mash or use a hand mixer (I used a mixer), but be sure to not over-whip if using an electric hand mixer or the potatoes will get gummy.
  3. Pour the hot infused half-and-half mixture through a fine mesh sieve into the potatoes (I strained out the garlic cloves, but left the bits of thyme in). Stir with a wooden spoon to combine and season with a little salt and pepper (which I did not do). Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed.
Eat and Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Silly Goose

Born July 14, 2009
Brought home November 29, 2009

Meet our baby boy, Goose!

Because of my work and school schedule, Goose has become quite attached to Matt.  Super cute!

He is already entering his crate upon command.

We are working on "sit" and "stay".

Started to bell train him to go potty outside, but the bells just scared him.  We may give that another try. However, "potty training" in general is going very well!

In classic Maltese fashion, Goose will "kill you with his kisses"! He loves licking Matt's ears and his tongue will even go up my nose sometimes :)

He is a silly Goose, and we can't wait for you to meet him!